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The Virus Is Constantly Mutating. What That Means for Treating Covid-19 Is Up for Debate

As the new coronavirus has spread from person to person, and country to country, the virus has changed thousands of times. The vast majority of these changes are incremental. But last week, researchers at the Los Alamos National Laboratory posited that at least one variant had significantly mutated to become more contagious.

If true, this development could have major implications. The possibility of what’s known as a functionally significant mutation of SARS-CoV-2, which causes Covid-19, has intrigued and worried researchers and policymakers almost since the moment the virus was first identified. A new variant could, for example, hamper efforts to develop a vaccine or mean that people who’ve already had Covid-19 might face a greater risk of getting it again.


Genomics, Infectious Disease


UC Berkeley



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